My other suck

So I suck at more than updating blogs. I have so many things I could talk about-from the release date for Scorched (March 17th, woo!) to the ups and downs of everyday life-but I can’t seem to remember I have this place here.

Another thing I’m awful at is marketing and promoting myself.

“So I have a book you might enjoy. I mean, it’s a fun read. Not to be up in your face about it but…you know, it’s ok. I like it. I’m making this worse, aren’t I? Here, please slit my wrists with these business cards and let’s forget this interaction ever took place….”

That’s pretty much a play by play of how my attempts to get people to check out my stuff goes.

It’s not that I hate people or have no faith in my work. It’s that I’m TERRIFIED of people and there are days when I go through what’s successful in my field and think I definitely have to be doing something gravely wrong.

I don’t write because I hope to become rich. That’s actually a laughable dream to me. I write because I can’t help it. I’m one of those who can’t turn off the (perfectly harmless, I swear) voices in my head unless I put them to paper. But while I absolutely have to do it, I figure it’s smart to try to make money to fund this necessity of life. And that’s where marketing and promotion come in. Because if no one knows my name or my work, I won’t make any money on it. The catch here is that really great marketers can be absolutely shitty writers and yet they still sell like they give out a free hit of heroin with each book. I’ve seen spelling and grammatical errors in teasers that have less than four words on them. And these people can’t produce work fast enough for the general public to consume.

In short, I suck at what is definitively the most important part of writing: selling myself. And it sucks that what you do between the pages isn’t and never will be the most important aspect of the craft.

The first step to solving a problem is addressing it, and address it I have. Hopefully in a follow up posting, I can talk about how I overcame my fear of other humans in order to sell them on my endeavors without awkwarding all over them. Until then, write and weird on. ✌


On a very personal note…

Hi, all. Any readers of my blog will notice I’ve been absent for….a long, long time. I figured instead of contining to neglect this space, I would go into the reasons why and help you get to know me a bit more intimately. Whether you like it or not, here comes the deep stuff.

I haven’t written lately because every post started out angry. Really angry. These last three years have been full of changes and challenges, some of them not the most fun. And after years of dealing with some of these challenges, against my wishes, I’ve become something of an embittered person.

I am an insulin-dependent diabetic. Many of you know of this disease, but unless you or someone close to you is diabetic, the extent of what you know reaches cake jokes and fat guys in their 50s. I had a good upbringing with homecooked meals, limited fast food, and moderation in junk. I worked out with my dad from the time I was twelve, and dieted frequently even through high school. Yeah, I was a chubby kid, but I didn’t binge eat Oreos until I puked. Not once.

On second thought, maybe once. Who doesn’t love Oreos? (This is a joke. I loathe vomiting and would never push myself to that point with any food. No matter how mouth-gasmic I find it.)

You see, what I described above doesn’t exactly fit your impression of the type 2 diabetic stereotype, does it? Must not have fit for six or more different doctors either, because when I started going to them for blurred vision, weight fluctuation, and general feeling of unwellness, I was told I was just overweight and should try to eat right. Bitterness point number one: the doctor who finally did diagnose me at 24 said I’d probably been fighting it for years. And multiple professionals missed it.

So what, I guess. I was diagnosed at 24 and I’m now 27. So what I went years of blacking out due to what I know now were high sugar episodes. Alcohol could do it. So could a large bowl of pasta (if coupled with stress, soda, etc, of course. It’s never just one thing and I really loved soda.)

I stopped seeing doctors almost 5 years before my eventual diagnosis. During that time, my weight ballooned, I felt awful all the time, and other physical symptoms I might be brave enough to detail in a later blog plagued me constantly. Bitterness point number two: for a long, long time I had a quality of life that made death truly seem the more appealing option. Truly. And you know what that does to you mentally?

Well, it brings me to point number three. Diabetes affects everything. Diabetes. Affects. EVERYTHING. I have to see twelve different specialists from everything to my eyes to my feet. I’m not even 30, and I envy how well some people double my age or more feel in their bodies. I suffer constant back and neck pain, slow healing, the inability to eat what I want when I want, and of course there’s the five shots and four pills I get to take daily. And that’s on a good day. I was undiagnosed for so long that I don’t feel “normal” if my blood sugar dips below 300. Typical healthy range is from about 80-120. I have to be more than double the high side of normal to feel like I can function. And that’s killing me.

I haven’t posted because all of the above things keep leaking into everything. As pervasive as diabetes is within my body, it’s becoming just as bad in my mind. So as of the beginning of 2015, I decided to make a change.

The change isn’t for me. Another problem with this disease from where I sit with it is that I don’t care for me anymore. I want to, and maybe I’ll get there somewhere down the line. I know it’s wrong, I know there’s so much to live for. I have goals and love and an amazing circle. But part of me still just sits there, thinking with complete apathy that I don’t care if this kills me. When getting better comes with headaches, nausea, exhaustion, dizziness, inability to think or function, and so much pain you don’t know how you can even walk, it seems like a better option to just let it go. But there’s someone I care about much more than myself, and for him I’m going to try. For him, I create worlds and sing songs and take those pills and fill those syringes. For him I take the chance that each day can be better than the next and each step toward control of diabetes can lead me to a better quality of life. For him I will let go of the bitterness. He didn’t cause it, and he doesn’t deserve for that to be a shadow that invades my interactions with him. For him I will choose consciously to stay and live even when that new part of me insists I’m doing things the hard way. So with this update, I begin taking the chance to improve my life, and make it a long one worth living.


Future updates will include what I think is important. This may be diabetes information to go along with book updates and other things from my life. If you are a reader or a follower, I appreciate your presence with me along this journey. It is never too late or too early to make a change for the better.


It’s my birthday! :D

Hello there, blog viewers. 🙂 It seems right that today’s Meet My Character Monday introduces Cameron Connelly, one of the characters closest to my heart. Cam has ten books in her series, each of them chronicling her journey through the ten Territories of the New States. She operates on a rotational basis as a member of an elite sect of Exorcists who try to maintain the balance of a dangerous and vastly changed post-apocalyptic world.

Some interesting facts about Cameron:

*Her brother Bernard was murdered in front of her when she was young. This event shaped much of Cam’s personality and lifestyle.
*She is the most powerful Exorcists that has ever existed. Not a single Exor that exists or has ever existed can hold a candle to her prowess.
*The spiritual entity that acts as her mentor, Father Ron, is actually a several times removed Uncle of Cam’s. He would have been an Exor, had he been born after the Cataclysm destroyed most of the world and brought the barriers down between realms.

cam mmcm

As always, don’t forget to check out the other awesome bloggers with characters for you to meet!!

Emily Gatrell

Jennifer Reynolds

Dawn Singh

Beth Barany

Teaser Tuesday

Hey, blog viewers! Look at that-two posts from me in as many days. 🙂 I was online sending a couple of copies of Seared and Pierced out (hoping for reviews!!) and decided while I was here, I’d try to at least get something in the blog. 🙂 Because I do Meet My Character Mondays, I thought it would be appropriate to do a Teaser Tuesday… because even though I am an author and create things all the time, I have a hard time coming up with good ideas for this here blog. 😛
This teaser needs a bit of back story: in the short story collection, A Whisper In The Dark, I have a short titled The Pallandrax. It’s about a book that when opened spills a dark shadow world into our own. The short focuses on the woman-the human woman-who opens the book. Darkbringer, the novella, will follow the journey of that woman’s daughter. She is part human and part Shadow-kin, having been turned partially into one of the creatures that claimed and destroyed Earth. Her father rules, and Leilani lives in a confusing half world, able through her mystical bloodline to see and experience things from the untainted form of Earth.
When Leilani saves one of her blood rivals from death, her life becomes even more complicated. The secrets behind her birth and the choices to make to determine her future come together in blood, betrayal, and the one slim chance to-against her bloodline and claim to the throne-change the world for the better.

teaser for Darkbringer

Hope you liked the teaser. 🙂 I know these fine people are my Meet My Character Monday group, but I’ll list their links on this post anyway. Because I like them. 😉 Check them out and stay awesome as always!

1. Emmy Gatrell…/09/meet-my-character-monday-9-29/

2. Ashe Barker

3. D M Singh!blog/c112v

4. Jennifer Lynn Reynolds

Oh no! I missed one!

So I missed the last Meet My Character Monday. 😦 It makes me very sad, but I have a good one for you today!

Switching it up from my romances and my NA series, I’d like to focus on one of my horror novels for today. Out Of The Dark is the first horror novel that I really got into writing. I typically add some romance into everything I write, but OOTD is all horror, all the way through. Though there are personal relationships between some of the characters, the dark tone and tension of the story maintains all the way through. Shane is my favorite character from this book.

Some interesting facts about Shane:

*Shane exists in a world that has been taken over by the darkness of nightmares. He is uncorrupted, and is outnumbered by the many, many people who were corrupted in the first wave. Shane’s main goal is to take the uncorrupted people he’s teamed up with to an island, which he believes is abandoned and safe from the blight that has taken most of the world.
*There is a snippet further back in my blog from Out Of The Dark, and it is a scene with Shane. I love Shane’s scenes, and sometimes hate the fact that I have to write through the perspectives of some of the other characters to get to his.
*Shane is an EMT. He is driven to help people, and trained in various first aid and survival techniques that make him able to pursue his goals. His training and innate drive to protect people is what compelled him to save the baby Leila after her mother was taken by the corruption.

Shane mmcm

I hope you enjoyed meeting Shane. 🙂 I would have to say he is definitely one of the best guys I’ve had the pleasure to write, and one of the characters I love the most. Shane’s story continues in Into The Dark, the sequel to Out Of The Dark. Though I don’t have a release date planned for either of them, I look forward to the day they’ll be available to buy!

Please check out these other wonderful blogs by some super cool people! 🙂

1. Emmy Gatrell…/09/meet-my-character-monday-9-29/

2. Ashe Barker

3. D M Singh!blog/c112v

4. Jennifer Lynn Reynolds

Meet My Character Monday #3

OK, so I didn’t manage to get any blog posting done between the last and this one…. But at least I’m still doing the Mondays I’ve devoted myself to. 😉

Today’s Meet My Character Monday was supposed to be Cameron Connelly of All Purpose Exorcisms, but ended up being Lydia McKinney, of the book Scorched. Lydia is the main character of the finale of the Pain & Love set, the first two books of which (Seared & Pierced) have already been published! 🙂 Because I’m working so hard to finish Scorched currently, Lydia is really the only character on my mind.

Lydia joins Mallory Wright, Leigh Garrett, and Dan Richardson (Lydia’s love interest) in fighting to eradicate the group known as The Hunters from their town once and for all.

Some interesting facts about Lydia:

*She is a Dragon in human form. Just because The Hunters have neutralized her power doesn’t make her a less formidable foe. She is fearless, powerful, and easily incited. Not only that, but her power over flame still works in human form!
*Lydia may seem selfish and uncaring, but she is deeply emotional and devoted to those she cares for. Writing Lydia is an emotional roller coaster for me-she tries so hard to keep most of the things she feels under wraps, and I as the author have to work to keep her intensity from spilling onto the pain when she’s trying to contain herself!
*As a Dragon soul, Lydia is practically immortal. The true spirit of a Dragon rests it its heart, which can be transferred from human form to human form indefinitely, as long as it is kept after the death of its host. Lydia and her sisters mourn the loss of their mother’s heart, which has been lost for years since her untimely death.

lydia mmcm

I hope you’ve enjoyed meeting Lydia. Look forward to other postings, and make sure to check out these other awesome writers/bloggers to meet their characters and check out their works, as well! As always, thanks for reading!

Emmy Gatrell

DM Singh

Jennifer Reynolds

Ashe Barker

Dave DarkStar Scott

Meet My Character Monday #2

Look at that, blog goers-I managed to stick to schedule and put up another Monday post. Yay! All right, today we meet Callum Creed. Callum is Quinn’s assigned. You’ll remember Quinn from my first Meet My Character Monday. You can check the previous post out for a refresher if need be. 🙂

Callum joins Quinn in the Life After The Dome series, but he is her opposite in more ways than one. While Quinn hopes to escape The Dome, Callum is fully devoted to making life there as productive and peaceful as possible. He is training to be a member of The Dome’s governing body, The Echelon.

Interesting facts about Callum:

*Callum is the first character to have a name change midway through the first draft. His original name was Tanner.
*Even though I write Life After The Dome in first person from Quinn’s point of view, it was Callum’s character and voice that convinced me the story was strong enough to flesh out.
*Callum is honorable and good in almost every way when the story begins. By the end of the series, he has been through the most character changes, yet has somehow managed to stay truer to himself than any of the others. Let’s just say Callum has an interesting and intense ride throughout!

I hope you enjoy meeting Quinn’s counterpart. Look forward to more of the Meet My Character Monday posts. I have tons of characters to go through! 🙂

callum mmcmbh

Don’t forget to check out the other fine writers involved in the MMCMBH. Follow the links below for more character fun!

Emily Gatrell
Dawn Singh
Jennifer Reynolds
Ashlee McKenna/Vivian St. Crow